Does anyone want to improve the Wikipedia page on Women in Buddhism, specifically the early Buddhism section?

Currently the Wikipedia page on Women in Buddhism has a small section on Early Buddhism:

But it only quotes from either generalists or scholars of other forms of Buddhism, and in addition is out of date. It would be good to use more recent and reliable research.

I also think it’s worth noting that modern studies in this field go back at least to 1930 with IB Horner’s Women under primitive Buddhism : laywomen and almswomen.

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I could definitely do it, wiki editing is a regular hobby of mine. I’ve got other projects currently but I can look into it.

What are some good sources ?

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Great. Even just a couple of references from actual scholars of early Buddhism would go a long way.

That’s where others will be better than I! Here’s a start:

https://independent.academia.edu/AliceCollett

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For Wikipedia, I like open access sources so people can click to read more. Among them: there’s a chapter in Great Disciples and Early Buddhist Sociological Thought

is great! Here’s her NBN interview for anyone who hasn’t heard it yet

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That was a great talk. I’d love to read that book, but these kinds of books are always so expensive. I wonder what the chances are that I could find it in my local library here in Sweden…

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Right?! Unfortunately WorldCat can’t find a copy in Sweden, but there’s a good chance your local library has an agreement with one of the libraries in e.g. Germany that does which will allow you to borrow the book on interlibrary loan. Just talk to your local librarian! :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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Oh! And I almost forgot this lovely little essay on the EBT’s stance towards nuns by a certain “Ajahn Sujato” (whoever that is :man_shrugging: )

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I have a video on women in Buddhism from awhile back over on YouTube. (I’ll refrain from linking to it here though you should be able to find it with a simple YouTube search). I have some material in the show notes. One good source I recall is Rita Gross’s Buddhism After Patriarchy, which does include a certain amount of material on early Buddhism. (Especially pp. 29-55).

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Ayyā Tathālokā has a number of articles: Tathālokā Bhikkhunī - Academia.edu

Ven. Anālayo also has a number of books and articles, often open access, including:

You can find more on his bibliography page by searching bhikkhuni or nun:

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While you’re at it… the Thilashin page on wikipedia could do with a bit of a correction under the Ordination section.

Thilashins are not fully ordained members of the Sangha.[2] The full bhikkhuni lineage of Theravada Buddhism died out, and for various technical and social reasons was therefore permanently absent, leaving the lay practice of living as a thilashin the only option for women who wish to renounce in Burma. As a result, in many respects the lifestyle of thilashins resembles that of an ordained bhikkhuni, even to the extent of making a daily alms-round.

Sorry I’m not wikipedia savvy

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What would you say instead?

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The bhikkhuni page itself could also do with a fair bit of editing…first photo is of maechees.

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Thanks for the sources everyone. I am now basically finished with my last project. For anyone who is interested, it is an almost complete re-write of the Jain philosophy article. It is a very fascinating topic! It’s almost like an essentialist and substantialist mirror image of Buddhism! I learned a lot of cool things, like how Jain philosophers believed there were three sexes!

Anyways, I am now going to start on the women in Buddhism page. It definitely needs some TLC, its a kind of just a big mess with no structure. This is going to…take some time… :upside_down_face:

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Something like this?? Other’s are welcome to add their input. I’m not sure about the last sentences wording.

Thilashins are not fully ordained members of the Sangha. The full bhikkhuni lineage of died out in Myanmar, and attempts for it’s resurrection have been strongly discouraged by the Myanmar Government leaving the lay practice of living as a thilashin the only option for women who wish to renounce in Myanmar. As a result, in some respects the lifestyle of thilashins resembles that of an ordained bhikkhuni, including making a daily alms-round. However, their lesser training rules does not allow for the full renunciation provided by the training of the Patimokkha.

Some points about the Thilashin - they are not allowed to go on daily alms round or to own an alms bowl (they must use a kitchen bowl). By memory they can only go on alms round twice a week and only allowed to receive uncooked rather than cooked rice

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Although, it’s true that in contexts such as Pa Auk monasteries - they can live a 10 precept life style and go on daily alms round. But this level of support is pretty rare. Precisely because the Thilashin are not recognized as Sangha the level of support and respect they receive is much less than the bhikkhus (or bhikkhunis where they exist), and this at times makes the basic necessities needed for renunciate life much more difficult to access.

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Thanks Ayya @Adhimutti
that was my understanding too but I don’t have first hand knowledge. We had a Pa Auk nun stay with us in Adelaide a while ago and she was very worried to be photographed going for alms or holding a ‘monk’s’ bowl.

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for its resurrection :wink:

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